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Discussion Starter #1
Just accepted a job offer to begin work in Chantilly on Jan 7th. Pretty pumped about it!

That being said... I'm looking for riding buddies and groups. I'll be living about a mile from Fountainhead, so if anyone makes it out that way frequently let me know! I also know a few guys that ride for Bike Lane, and hear that there is a good Thursday night group ride.

If anyone knows of good groups, or is looking for someone to ride with let me know! I fall into the "Fun trail ride" category of rider.
 

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MORE is a huge organization (relative to MTB anyway) and is particularly active in that area. I'd hook up with them for group rides, work days and socials and you'll have a crew of riding buddies in no time.
 

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Yup, MORE is a good starting place. Weekly rides at Wakefield at least 2-3 days/week.

There's also a weekly ride in Wednesday @6:30 starting at The Bike Lane in Reston and riding through Lake Fairfax Park.

And quite a few regular MeetUp groups at many of the parks.

It's a great area for mountain biking - 3-4 quality neighborhood trail networks, plus an hour to get to Front Royal (GWNF, Elizabeth Furnace) or Frederick (Watershed & Gambrill State Park) for actual mountains.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Sounds good to me! Making the Wednesday night ride at Wakefield, and the Thursday night ride out of the bike lane should be easy for me to do. Riding trails for the first time in the dark is always fun, haha.

I'm planning on doing the "Figure 8 of hate" ride out of Elizabeth Furnace the Sunday before Christmas. I'm excited to check that out.
 

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Let me suggest the Original Figure 8 which takes you all the way to Signal Knob and adds some additional technical ridge riding.
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/17578767
Let's not kill the new guy before he's even settled in!!! ;)

Either version of the Figure-8 is pretty awesome. It's a long day either way, plan accordingly. If you aren't used to riding east coast rocks, plan to be slower than normal.
 

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It's a long day either way, plan accordingly. If you aren't used to riding east coast rocks, plan to be slower than normal.
Yeah, bring plenty of food and water - there's a piped spring after mudhole gap near the gate on the dirt road leading to Signal Knob, it's roughly at the crossover point of the figure 8, so you could potentially hit it twice.

Full repair kit including 2 tubes would be wise. You'll have a few stream crossings on mud hole gap, they are probably running high right now.
 

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Haha, thanks for the warning guys! Most of my serious riding happens in Pisgah, so I'm used to spending some time in the back country. I'll bring my full repair kit, and a water filter just in case.

I can't stop looking at all of the riding up there. Being so close to the mountains is going to be a game changer for me. I drive out to western NC to ride at least once a month... and that's about 5.5 hours each way, lol. Being 1-2.5 hours from good riding is going to be amazing.
 

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Let me suggest the Original Figure 8 which takes you all the way to Signal Knob and adds some additional technical ridge riding.
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/17578767
If you like that one, try the Big Buzzard Lollipop next. Same parking area, other ridge.
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/22126193
Since it hasn't been said bluntly yet I'll go ahead; these trails are stupid rocky. I'm a huge fan of rocks and it sounds like you are too, but just go with the knowledge that ~4 mph isn't crazy for sections of this stuff... It's near trials-level technical riding once you're up on the ridges. Super fun, but maybe not so much if you weren't expecting it.

I've never ridden Pisgah, but even when talking to people who have not many can come up with a place more rocky and technical than Elizabeth Furnace.
 

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Also plenty of rides in the area of Elizabeth Furnace if you don't have the full Figure 8 of hate in you that day. Any variety of variations. The Bear wallow downhill may the best downhill around though.
 

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And yes Buzzard rock if crazy, top of Makena and top of Bear wallow are both fairly burly as well. take the time to session some parts. its all ridable, but its hard at the end of 20+ miles of ups and downs, especially your first go around
 

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Since it hasn't been said bluntly yet I'll go ahead; these trails are stupid rocky. I'm a huge fan of rocks and it sounds like you are too, but just go with the knowledge that ~4 mph isn't crazy for sections of this stuff... It's near trials-level technical riding once you're up on the ridges. Super fun, but maybe not so much if you weren't expecting it.

I've never ridden Pisgah, but even when talking to people who have not many can come up with a place more rocky and technical than Elizabeth Furnace.
Haha, thanks for the warning! It is much appreciated. My buddy and I both like tech riding, and should have all day to ride. But if we happen to get into some beers the night before I will think about trying to find a shorter route, haha. I could probably just to half of the figure 8 right?

If we do the 20 mile route... should I be thinking 5-6 hours?
 

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If we do the 20 mile route... should I be thinking 5-6 hours?
A buddy of mine who I consider to be a very solid tech rider (maybe not the most fit) joined a group to do that ride about a month ago. Took them about 5-1/2 hours total time (4ish moving time).
 

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The wife and I visit WNC twice a year. The more technical trails in this region dont have as many fireroads and easier ways to climb and the downhills aren't as long. But its the same mountain range.
 

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So 4-5 hrs is standard. You can skip the southern loop (Woodstock loop) of the figure of eight and get in a 13+ mile ride (if you include going around the reservoir on the single tract) That takes 2+hours.

You can also go up Bear Wallow to the top, down "Hike a Bike" turn right and then up Signal knob and across Makena to bear Wallow and back down that . Its 12+ plus miles of almost all single tract. Mostly all in the sadle as well.

I did the standard EFurnace loop yesterday (without the Woodstock loop) it took me 2:30hrs with a snack break. Stream crossing were cold but doable, and trail was fast and fun.
 
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